The plan was to try and time Anita’s visit to co-inside with the discharge as best we could so we aimed for 1pm just past lunch time. Tea time came and went and the change of shifts and the vital checks and early evening tea trolley rounds, thought I’d go for a little walk, use the loo, just because I can now!, and try and settle down for the evening. The guy opposite (goby pub fight dude) was back from surgery after having his jaw wired; a rest from him talking bollox at least. Feeling pretty chuffed with my confident loo visit I got as comfy as possible circa 8pm and Jamie in the corner, still curtain bound, had already started the nose trumpet snoring so it was ear buds in and immerse in music, chatting with a close friend sharing music tracks and tunes. I must have floated off on some chill out tracks jolted back to semi awake about 2am, the full ensemble giving it some beans nose trumpet wise. Going home!
A restless night but it would be the last one! Please be the last one? In and out of sleep the night dragging on and then it was the change of shift and Thursday had begun in earnest. Last vitals and meds round done I drifted back off to sleep to be awoken by the breakfast guy; tea yes please! OJ, soggy Weetabix hhhhhhhmmmmmm kinda got into this now but can’t lie looking forward to fresh fruit selection, fresh coffee, croissants and Friday morning at home. Waited for the morning rush for the bathroom to be over, having a chilled morning eventually getting my slack arse out of bed for the shuffle to the bathroom. Same procedure getting up and at ‘em, getting more fluid each time, taking it easy waiting for the chest, shoulders and neck to find it’s weight level. Trying to go to the toilet seemed impossible, but they kept on insisting, a walnut was all they were getting, a shave and wash, some attempt to look half presentable for wifey. I was up looking out at the sunshine and outside world when the morning consultants came in and a sharp bark from Kat “get that chin up Mark !!” prompting a quickish turnabout chin up and smile, a smile that was reciprocated she was very pleased to see me up and steady. We kinda said our goodbyes and with that she was off to see her next cases at whatever stage they were at, amazing people. Going home!
Lunch came and went and Anita had arrived I said my discharge had been signed off we were just waiting on the meds to come from the pharmacy. The leaded clock hands kicked in once more as things were packed up, I wrote a heartfelt card of thanks to those amazing nurses and staff that had looked after me, some swanky chocolates too, again what could you give to say thanks that could even be measured on the same level, but all I had was words. With bags all packed up, finally the senior nurse came with my take away meds bags. This was the first time Jammie’s curtains had been open as they wheeled him off to physio and I wished him a good session, he actually responded with a thanks, but on leaving time he was zonked out but I said goodbye regardless, it was good to see him at least open to the outside world/ward. Him moving his arms was remarkable when you think about it and we walked gently out the ward past the nurses desk saying goodbye again them all smiling wishing me well, their job done for me setting me off once more and out the ward security doors we went. Going Home!
New territory for me feeling OK on my feet, into the lift to ground level the enormity finally hit me, fear and trepidation that I was leaving that safety of 24/7 care at the touch of a button, shifting that onus onto my amazing wife she just put her arms around me and said “it’s OK we’ll be fine you’ll be home soon”. Another amazing day looked so bright and felt so warm as Anita pulled the van out so I could step up on in, with a pillow to support my back we set off back to Stony Stratford. First time I had seen the route she had been driving all those times coming over, obviously better than my journey in via the ambulance over a week ago, I just gazed out the window can’t really recall my thoughts just lost looking at the world oblivious, a world away from being inside those hospital walls. Going Home!
Took the average hour getting home, roads now familiar as we pulled up our driveway and was in fact truly home. All seemed a bit surreal walking into the house and sitting in our garden, looking forward to some home cooking, not forgetting to stick to the regimented time slots for the med 1000mg paracetamol, Codeine 60mg, and laxadol in the evenings the only addition being Tramadol 100mg in the mornings; had stock for about 7 days so that would take me into the following week at 4 times a day. Tate was coming over to help out and keep me in check as Anita was WFH. Looking forwards to my own bed Anita had done some homework on pillow arrangements as I gently, with a little help, got into bed as ours was a lot lower than a hospital one, I was in almost a reverse of getting out then legs up and rest! Going Home!
Amazing full night sleep as Anita woke me with that breakfast I’d dreamed of, bit of a struggle getting to sit up but I was up hhhhhhhhhmmmmmmm so good, a great start to the day looking out into the garden and beyond through the glazed bedroom walls. Meds taken time for a nice home shower one you could actually stand under, up and into the garden taking in the warmth of the morning, Tate was up, felt quiet emotional today for some reason? Just pottering around Tate trying to keep me in check the I’m OK back to normal irrational mind-set I can do all these mundane things in my mind. Tate trying his hardest to keep me doing nothing I think this was going to be the next hardest step ‘Doing Nothing!’ Me being active in my daily routines and then also the coaching and just shredding all that now parked for however many weeks there was no time line currently to work to, only the first week I was to rest, that would turn out to be a hard first goal. Going home!
Yep it was, just a day being up and mobile took its inevitable toll as the recovery roller coaster went into it’s first low point, but visits from neighbours, family and friends and the countless supporting messages keeping you on the level with hope ahead that things will be alright? Saturday again battling with doing nothing along with the gang off riding Breacon Gap on Saturday I prayed for a safe ride, Anita not doing the Sunday ride this time again her and Tate keeping me in check. We talked about putting together a rehab exercise plan with the help from a mate that spends most of his time mending pro superbike racers, but again as I was already more advanced it was a matter of adapting the routines to my own personal work out with an aim to start in a weeks time. Going Home!
The days ticked by steady, Anita and Tate working well as a team keeping me in check, doing little walks around the block, catching up with neighbours who seemed amazed at my progress, a steady flow of visitors family and friends and again support from the MTB community I am lucky to have so many amazing people around me. The laxatose, Senna and gravity combo plus the other concoction of drugs doing battle, as I was getting concerned as to where all this food was going? Oh and there it was normally regular as, things started if shitting a walking boot out your arse with ice crampons on was anything to go it wasn’t a pleasant experience, screwing up the macerator in the process oh for FS!!!!!!! Going Home!
That was to be the precedent for the next few days. Wednesday was here with a 10am slot to have my wound checked and scar dressing changed if required with a check for any signs of infection. Anita had purchased some large Mepore water proof dressings in case, but the nurse removed the honeycomb dressing and gave it a clean and confirmed everything was hunky-dory, but gave me some water proof dressings just in case. I guess another goal achieved in the recovery time line like taking a crap, next Iwas guess the meds finishing them all seem to be a goal on that line of recovery. I’d contacted some clients about outstanding work projects and arranged for a close friend to complete the works with me just being there sitting around on the coming Friday, I wasn’t going to be much use but I was there in spirt I guess. We got the job completed, well all the major works. The Friday was as hot as into the 30’s degree wise and the day and heat took it’s toll, I was shattered. The rescue team Anita, Gosia, Paul, Nikki and Carl were popping around for an evening alas Chris and Andrew could not make it, but I needed to see these people and say my heartfelt thanks in person. It would never be enough as their prompt actions most defiantly contributed in me being in the state I am now and not in a wheelchair For ever indebted, amazing people and with all the shit that’s going on in the world restores faith that the majority of people/human beings are just bloody amazing. Going home !